For Day 3, the same thing inevitably happens every year: I don’t get through everything I planned. Many little things occur I don’t foresee, or many things I plan take a bit longer… But here are the things I actually got to:
Verb Vocab Dance (dance/movement/challenge–call it whatever appeals most to your students! I’ve learned a big portion of appealing to this age group is all in the marketing. What you called it/how you describe it matters!)
Purpose: to help the really abstract endings of the 4 principal parts of verbs to stick! (Because I know they never stuck in my brain well all through Challenge A–until I did this….)
I introduced each verb on my vocab list by asking students if it looked familiar or they could guess the meaning just by knowing English.
I drew students’ attention to the pattern they can see in the list of verbs listed with their 4 principal parts: the endings. I explained we were going to move our bodies differently for each word and for each principal part ending to help them stick in our minds.
I introduced hand motions:
for “o”: I made a big O above my head;
For “are” I made a sign language “r” with my fingers
for “avi” I told this story: someone going up on a roller coaster may be saying, “ah” with anxiety, but when they go down the other side, they say “weeeee!”–so we made the motion with one hand going up then down a roller coaster hill, saying “ah-weee!”
last, for “”atus” I waved my arms up and down like undulating tentacles because the ending makes me think of “octopus.”
After we covered that, I introduced a movement for the stem of each verb. For instance, for pugno, I put up my fists; for laudo, I raised my hands in the air; for explore, I put my hand to my forehead like I was searching. We went though each one, making the movement of the stem followed by the moment for the ending.
After I introduced all that, we went through the list, joining the motions for each verb with the endings for each principal part. This was so good for my scroochy or young students especially–it was so active and required both attention and energy. It actually went over better than I expected, with all the older ones doing it with attention.
And I sure know it worked for me. I have gotten those endings down!!!
Purpose: to practice translating and noticing declension endings to determine Latin noun cases.
At home, make sentences on large cards, one word per card. All nouns are in Latin, but other words are in English. I made enough sentences to give to each group of 4-6 students a sentence.
In class I split students into small groups of 4-6 and asked students to:
a. talk to each other to determine how to unscramble the sentence and translate it.
b. Using the 6 yellow post-it notes I give them, write these labels on them: SN, V, DO, IO, OP, Poss. Use the 5 other-colored post-its and have them write the Latin noun cases on them: Nom, Gen, Dat, Acc, Abl.
c. put the sticky notes on the word cards.
d. don costumes that fit their words if desired.
(I had my helpers circulate the room to help; the younger students really needed step-by-step help to figure any of this out.)
When the groups were done, I called each up to read their sentence, explain how they knew how to label the words, and translate. (Some groups could explain well; younger groups could not, but that’s ok–I let them report whatever they understood–and they could all figure out translation pretty accurately.)
An older group presented well and they did it for the parent presentation as well later that morning.
Purpose: to get the endings drilled into students’ heads; to have some quiet time, creative time, that some students need.
I didn’t have this on my plans, but I ended up using it. (It was on day 2, once, but I ran out of time. This idea came from lunch time with our practicum speaker, who used it to fill time during standardized testing when she taught school.)
Goal: to draw a picture using the letters of the 1st conjugation present tense endings to create the image. There are two ways to approach this, basically: use the endings of o,s,t,mus,tis,nt as the outline of a form, or use the letters to fill in areas of a drawing. I saw many cool student ideas. Some made bubble letters of their names, and inside each letter, copied the endings, very small. Others wrote the words very small to form the lines of the drawings themselves. One girl drew stick figures in various athletic poses, and their limbs were all strings of these letters: “ostmustisnt.”
I stressed that the main goal was writing the endings in order each time, so that order is what sinks into their brains.
Purpose: to review vocab (old or new)
At home, place vocab words on slips of paper.
Ask for volunteers to pull out a word from a hat. They act it out, trying to get students to guess by their antics.
I ran out of time for this, but the good thing about this game is, even if you only do 4 words, it’s a great filler activity for short time spans. I might use this at my next camp as the standard filler for when I have a few minutes waiting for the recess helpers to arrive.
Mime a Verb
Purpose: to practice verb vocab and adding endings of the person doing the action
(Note–My lesson plans ended up changed; I conflated showing how to conjugate with this game, back-to-back. I had planned to show them how to conjugate a verb and then, a few hours later, play the mime game!)
First, I had to demonstrate this completely. I chose one verb, “laudo,” and wrote its 4 principal parts on the board. I also wrote a blank conjugation chart on the board. I told students there were three steps for us to translate the present tense verbs:
step 1. find the 2nd principal part and circle the ending (while simultaneously defining the stem). I demonstrated circling ARE. I wrote “laud,” the stem, in the spaces of the conjugation chart.
step 2: I asked students what were the endings for present tense verbs. They answered by singing “o, s, t, mus, tis, nt.” I began writing them in the chart, after “laud” but after leaving a space. I got some laughs by asking students to read some of the words as they were: “laudnt,” for instance.
step 3: I explained the missing part–a vowel, explaining that you have to add a certain vowel based on the conjugation. I explained that all verbs we learned that day are 1st conjugation, nicknamed the “a” conjugation because you have to add an a before all endings except for 1st person singular. I had a student add an “a” in all the right places.
Demonstrating how I’d mime, I went through each form in order. For laudo, I simply pretended to praise God.
BUT for the 2nd person, I said I had to hire an actor to help me. I brought up a student and commanded, “Laudas!” I asked the class what that meant, and waited for “You praise.”
For the 3rd person, I said I needed to hire two actors, whispered to them to praise God, and I pointed to their acting and asked the class what they were doing: “They praise; Laudat.” I did this for plural, hiring as many “actors” as needed to have each scenario acted out. (Edit: I actually now remember I used pugnare for this demo–which is great because they love seeing “fight” being acted out, but it also kept all demonstrations of that word firmly under my control! I highly recommend that!)
Starting the Game: I asked volunteers who wanted to be directors in this mime game to choose a slip of paper. The slips of paper had a single verb on it, conjugated for a specific person. The volunteer had to look at the chart and determine what the word meant as well as who and how many people were doing it and hire the appropriate actors. (I highly recommend calling on older students, at least at first. A sweet 9 year old was always so enthusiastic but really didn’t understand; she needed to watch everyone else and then maybe go last.) The director has to quietly instruct actors of their jobs. (Tip: have about 5-6 kids draw a word at a time, that way they had time to think about their word while waiting, saving time between turns.
Then the scene was acted out (maybe exploramus or orant or pugnas…) Then students had to guess what word the director pulled from the bag. This was a hit and could have gone on for far longer. But I did notice that very few students were raising their hands to answer. That’s not necessarily bad. I think it helps review vocab for the younger kids, even if only the sharpest/most mature could even begin to figure out the personal endings. It might be a great game that allows two levels of learning/review to go on simultaneously. The young ones were thoroughly enjoying it and getting what they could while the older ones were challenged to push their skills.
Latin Mad Libs
Purpose: to review vocab and how to decline and conjugate.
(I never got to this but perhaps I will in my next camp.)
I had some sentences written in y notes and put them on the board in Latin with some strategic blanks. For instance:
____________ (SN/Nom) sees __________(DO/Gen).
Rex __________________(verb) in the _________________ (OP/Abl)
In each case, I’d ask for Latin words from those volunteering answers. Then I’d ask the class what the word meant and write the translation below. Then we’d talk through the declension ending or conjugation ending to make sure it was correct. When that’s all shored up, I’d ask a student to read and translate the entire sentence all together and wait for the laughs. (I gave my students a folder with all vocab lists in them so for this, maybe having folders out is a good idea, especially for young ones.)
Another idea to liven this up is to have models/actors illustrate each sentence as you go. If someone suggests “Nauta” as the subject, you’d call up a volunteer to be the sailor and put a hat on him/her, etc. For verbs, the noun doing the action would have to strike a pose appropriate for the verb. Somehow this never got old…
Purpose: repeating/reviewing vocab
Split class into groups of at least 5 students. (Preferably one group per helper.)
Have one team come up and demonstrate this (to avoid 100 questions before you can begin). Give the student at the head of the line a folder with the vocab in it, for reference. (The folder stays at that end of line.) Also, give that student with a small white board and dry erase marker and instruct him to write a word on a board that the teammates cannot see. Then that person turns and whispers the word to the person behind him in the team line. Each teammate thus passes on the whispered word until the end. The last person speaks aloud the heard word, and then the writer holds up the white board to show what he wrote. Students laugh, ha ha, and the team writes down “1” in the corner if the spoken and written words match. Last, the writer walks to the end of the line, leaving student #2 with the white board and marker to have her turn. Repeat until all students have a turn.
(Note, you could require that each word chosen comes with the translation. Example, writing/saying “natua, sailor.”)
Purpose: to review all new grammar from the 3 days AND get energy out!
I simply told students each areas they can walk to, designating them with numbers/letters. I asked a question, let all students walk to their corner, then I pulled out an index card designating one corner which has to answer. With each question, students have to move. My saying the question before they move was crucial because they all needed to think of the answer, not knowing if their corner would be called on to answer or not.
This is very popular and gives the students much-loved social interaction. It can get loud, so sometimes and with some classes, it’s just too much to ask in the moment! But in general, it’s a great, simple game and a lot gets reviewed because answering is pretty quick when a group of kids is doing it together.
Purpose: to review vocab and endings
This is done as my post Latin Clue Game describes. On this last day, their game card (1 per pairing of students) has 4 columns, since I added a verb column using the day’s new vocab. Also, I made the card up really thinking I’d get to teaching both present and perfect tenses, but we never got to perfect. So I just put a note on the board that all verbs ending in “avit” meant past tense, telling the students I’d meant to teach them that but ran out of time.
Just as in day 2, I had the class add student names to the subject noun column and the direct object column–and had to remember to make up the clue cards with those names before pulling out one from each category to be the mystery for the students to guess!
And that’s it–end of day 3!